Hey, it's what I do! Welcome to my creative arts blog!

Welcome to my Maker's blog, where I feature my own unique creative projects. I'm eight years out from breast cancer and counting my blessings.

Sunday, April 28, 2019

Save The Books! DIY a Fake Book Box



I saw a project on Pinterest where a crafter cut apart actual good books so she could glue the spines
 to a storage box. She chose the books for the look of their spines.
To be clear, I've cut up and recycled books when they are
 so decrepit that they won't hold together for reading
 but it makes me sad to see readable books destroyed..

BUT,
 truly do like the idea of some nice book themed storage,
so here's what I came up with. And NOT ONE book
was destroyed in the creation of this project!



Ooooh aaaaah!
And here's the best part....I didn't need to buy anything to do this project.
 I already had everything on hand and you probably do, too!

Here's the list of materials you will need-
A good sturdy cardboard box that will fit your shelves.
Inside rolls from gift wrap, paper towels or toilet paper, depending on your box size.
Hot glue
Tissue paper or printed napkins for texture.
Mod Podge.
Craft paint.
Sharpie marker.
Spray sealer.

Cut the cardboard tubes into roughly thirds. Flatten slightly so that they measure about 2" across. These will form your faux book "spines."


Measure the height of your box. In this photo I've covered the box with crumpled tissue and painted it white.

Cut off the flattened tubes to the correct height. At this point start fitting your  spines across the front of your box. Cut some narrower to make the design more interesting or you can keep them all the same size, it is up to you!


Use hot glue to make dimensional stitching and decor across the fake spines. Look at photos of old books for spine ideas.  You can also add other designs with the hot glue, such as  fleur de lis, capital letters or numbers.


Tear the tissue or printed napkins in small pieces and crumple up tightly then smooth out. Spread  Mod Podge on the spines you have made. You can paint the spines or cover them with printed paper as I have done.


Hot glue your finished spines to your chosen box. Remember not to glue them down flat but leave them a bit curved for the realistic book look. Here are two of my book spines glued to the box. As you can see I ended up painting the box black on this side so if it showed between the books it would blend in..

Cover the sides of your faux book storage box with glue and crumpled tissue or printed napkins to match the books on each end. Smooth with a soft brush but not too much, as the crumpled tissue will tear. It will give you a wonderful antique texture so it's worth it. Let dry completely.

I

 Dry brush the edges and spines black contrast color sparingly until you get the look you want. If you get too much on your project just wait for it to dry and do a coat of white over it to tone it down. I was totally going for a vintage look with my books.

You can use the Sharpie to add more details if you wish. 

 Ta da!

Look, you've made a clever storage box for your shelves that looks like you've collected
a set of antique books! You can also choose to make your book box
look like a set of matched books. It is entirely up to you.

Friday, April 19, 2019

Pallet Boards and Nursery Tree Pots = Vintage Style Planters on a Budget!

Gardening season is almost here and I was eagerly looking for some big vintage style wooden planters for my garden.

Dang! Big planters are SPENDY!

So look what we did...


Here's our solution using FREE wood salvaged from pallets and really cheap tree pots from our local nursery.



This 23 gallon planter is 24" across and 14" high. It was only $6 and
 it is plenty big enough for loads of flowers or veggies.

But yikes! It was ugly.


But here it is NOW.

Oooh aaaah!

It has just the perfect vintage vibe I was hoping for!

Look at this lovely FREE wood we salvaged from old pallets. 

We did not have to pull the pallets apart. Some of them were already falling apart and the others we just cut between the support boards. Two old pallets gave us got plenty of lumber pieces long enough for this project. 

Ahem. The Welding Man cut them to length with his big manly saw.

The boards are a mix of fir and cedar and have not been chemically treated, so the sawdust was not a hazard.


For this project we decided to go under the rim around the top of the planter. We laid out a few boards  and marked them before cutting off any of the ends that had nails sticking out.


Laying the planter on its side, we fastened the boards with a slight gap between them at the top because of the angle on the pot. We totally eyeballed the spacing so it isn't perfect. Then we used my favorite power tool of all time...the handy dandy air powered brad nailer.

 Kachunk! LOVE that brad nailer!


Ahhhh! Loving how this project is coming together As you can see the brads are sticking through to the inside of the plastic. The ends are easily bent down by hand or with a pair of pliers. If you cut them off you lose some of the fastening power of the brads and the boards could come loose.


 

The cost for these two vintage style beauties? $12 total for both of the pots. The pallet wood was free and we already had the tools and the brads.

We didn't even have to sand the boards!





I like them alot! 

Tomorrow I will do a  bit of dry brushing to the boards with the turquoise blue paint from the deck and maybe a bit of white. Don't know yet if I want to paint the black rims at the tops. I'll let you know and post photos if I do.

Don't you love it when an idea becomes a project and it works and it's just so darn CHEAP?


Wednesday, April 3, 2019

I Spray Painted My Outdoor Rug

So...here's my front deck in the middle of the warm weather fix up. I spray painted the plastic chairs a bright turquoise and found a boring tan rug for $20.
Good start.


I figured I could paint that blah rug as so many others have done on Pinterest, Hometalk, Design Sponge, Apartment Therapy....

I thought maybe multicolored stripes....or chevrons...or a pretty paisley stencil...or even FLOWERS!!! 

But what?
All of those ideas require precision measuring, detailed 
placement of yards of painters masking tape and hours of work.

That's enough of that noise. 
I figured I had two, maybe three days of really nice weather 
for this project but no painters tape or pretty stencil.

So today I just went for it.



What I DO HAVE are a 16" pizza cardboard, a Dollar Store plate and a leftover saucer. 

Hmmmm, the idea is coming together.



I also have cheap Walmart paint in flat black and white
 PLUS the bright turquoise spray paint I used on the chairs.



I figured, just do it.
It's a $20 rug. 
At least it won't be boring anymore.

Here's a tip-wipe the edges of the saucer and plate
(or whatever you choose to use) after each spray
 to avoid getting the wet paint from a previous color making
 a "drip ring" on your work.


Hey, I like this alot!



This is not chocolate pudding, ice cream or cake batter. It is craft paint to 
touch up the brown spray paint which disappointed me. 

But hey, I still like the way this rug looks!


No more BORING tan rug!


This was quick and easy and turned out even better than I pictured in my head!

And I didn't have to spend a dime for this project since I had everything I needed already.
I call that a win win!!